“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.” Abraham Lincoln

Brendon Lee O’Connell, Anti-Zionist Or Plain Racist?

with 9 comments

I can’t make my mind up about the Australian racist, Brendon Lee O’Connell:

“A man who posted a video of himself on the internet in which he refers to Judaism as a “satanic death cult” has been found guilty of six of the seven racial harassment charges brought against him.

Brendan Lee O’Connell has been found guilty of publishing racist material online after a two week trial which was centred around a video he made of himself arguing with Jewish man Stanley Keyser at a Friends of Palestine protest against the sale of Israeli oranges at a South Perth supermarket in 2009.

In the video O’Connell calls Jewish people racist and homicidal.

Written words super imposed over the footage include: “See how the lies roll off the Judiac’s tongue?” when Mr Keyser is speaking.

After the incident, which ends with O’Connell yelling at Mr Keyser to “get a good Jewish lawyer,” he went to the Bell Tower and filmed himself calling Judaism a “death cult.”

The jury took seven hours to reach the verdict of guilty on all but one of the seven charges which related to the video of the argument, the argument itself, and several blog posts. “

Is he just an Anti-Zionist or a Far Right bigot?

You might think that it would be easy to determine which is which.

I would hope that there should be clear blue water between Anti-Zionists and Far Right bigotry, but it’s not so clean cut when you examine the issues and people around the Brendan O’Connell case.

Firstly, he was arrested at a Friends of Palestine event against Israeli oranges in Perth.

Secondly, I had looked for a notice or something on the web, supposing that Friends of Palestine in West Australia would want to distance themselves from O’Connell, and only if you really, really search can you find something:

“Given members of Friends of Palestine WA are shown and identified in the video in question, we feel it is incumbent on you to point out to your readers that we as an organisation cannot be held responsible for the racist views expressed by a rogue individual who unfortunately happened to attend one of our protests.

Furthermore, we feel it is incumbent on you to make it known to your readers that we are unequivocally opposed to the vile racist views expressed by Mr O’Connell in his execrable video.”

That’s after the event, and Friends of Palestine in West Australia have an unforgivable taste for that nasty racist play, Seven Jewish Children.

Thirdly, the picture is further confused when you look at O’Connell’s main supporter, Jeff Kerr’s MySpace page, you see plenty of “anti-Zionist links”, for example, the Institute for Research: Middle Eastern Policy, James Petras, and

Fourthly, there is nothing on the main Australians for Palestine site, but there is a certain shared taste for some web material, Alan Hart’s, the well known racist, Steve Lendman, Jonathan Cook and Deir Yassin Remembered (which readers will remember is run by a Holocaust denier, Daniel A. McGowan).

Fifthly, Brendon O’Connell’s blogger profile suggests he likes a few racist sites, Michael Hoffman’s Revisionist Review and Whitelaw Towers, a White supremacists blog with a love of the Blood and Honour neo-Nazis.

He certainly gets a lot of support from the Far Right, and his friend’s main blog is littered with a mixture of “anti-Zionist” and Far Right links, e.g. Zundelsite and Adelaide Institute. Although, again, Alan Hart and Gilad Atzmon get a look in. Even Fred Toben, infamous Holocaust denier, lends O’Connell his support too.

Sixthly, scanning the earlier entries of O’Connell’s blog, before he passed it over to Jeff Kerr, it is clear he’s not playing with a full pack of cards.

O’Connell was an occasional poster on Indymedia, Perth for years. His posts and material there suggests that he’s clearly on the Far Right and that his antisemitic views are well known.

Finally, as J-Wire reports:

“An eye witness in Perth’s Distric Court told J-Wire: “O’Connell’s reaction was to shout ‘Free Palestine and Free Iraq and he said ‘Netanyahu will appear in the dock one day’.”

So it seems probable that Brendon O’Connell was a Far Right provocateur, who was swept along in all of the Anti-Zionist activities that went on. I can’t be 100% sure as there’s a lot of material to surf through, but that seems likely.

I do find it surprising that Anti-Zionists in Australia did not make more of an effort to distance themselves from O’Connell, and that they and his Far Right supporters often share a similar taste in reading material.

Irrespective of who Brendon O’Connell is and what weird racist views he holds, it is less than coincidental that outpourings of animus towards Israelis are frequently linked to anti-Jewish racism.

So often the two go hand in hand.

Maybe Australian Anti-Zionists should reflect on that fact.

PS: I would like to apologise to readers for including in some links to questionable sites, this was unavoidable in this instance.

Update 1: I should remind, those neo-Nazis, thickos and their mates (yes, you know who you are, eh ? Bill In Ohio), that I do not post your racist filth, as per my comments policy. Try reading it, if you can. Your filth will remain confined to the moderation queue.

9 Responses

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  1. Populist Jew hatred is the glue that cemnents Nazis, Jihadis and Commies together.

    In this case calling the religion a death cult would answer your question.

    In this case the difference between someone who advocates the creation of a Palestinian State and anti Zionism ( Marxist codeword for elimination of Israel) are clear enough.

    Those that want peace and are decent folks are not consumed in a 24/7 rage.

    Signs that one has a problem

    A blog that focuses on the issue exclusively.

    Targeting Jewish blogs.


    Holocaust Denial or Trivialization

    Conspiracy talk Jews own the media, ZOG and so forth.

    Khazar theories

    Rationalization of terror

    Talk of Israeli Genocide

    Jew as Nazi themes

    Some suggest at a certain point iit is hard to differentiate the difference between hard left and right. The Holocaust Museum shooter ranted on about Trutherism which is almost always hard left.


    30/01/2011 at 18:18

  2. Beakerkin,

    It is obvious to me that you have serious hangups with anyone on the Left, and I would gladly pick apart your comments, but frankly it wouldn’t make any difference would it?

    I positively welcome readers having different views from me, but monothematic rants (“it is the Lefties”, again and again) are exceedingly tedious.

    And I’ll just make one final point before I ignore you.

    Truther movement is littered with the Far Right, any rational assessment would come to that conclusion.

    That is not to say it is *solely* on the Far and Extreme Right, as the themes of lizards, conspiracies and dancing Israelis does tend to overlap in fragile minds, as I have pointed out before, SEVERAL times.

    But von Brunn was CLEARLY on the Far Right…


    30/01/2011 at 19:34

  3. Mods

    Trutherism is almost entirely a far left phenomenon. One can see it on far right sites like Stormfront. However, Michael Lerner, Howard Zinn, the folks at Counterpunch , Vann Jones and Rosie O’Donnel are clearly on the left.

    Von Brun’s rants about Jewish/ Zionist control of the media would have fit in very nicely on most far left sites. Other than some odd rants about the Holocaust he is just as closer to home on the left than
    the right.

    In fairness there is a mental health defect with Truthers and Holocaust Deniers.
    Those that advocate those positions really belong treated by mental health professionals.

    The political extremes are not polar opposites as you presume. Horst Mahler moved seamlessly from far left to far right.


    31/01/2011 at 00:46

  4. Beakerkin,

    Do you have comprehension skills problems ?

    Just read your comment on Pinochet, and frankly you seem to live in another alternative world, where 98% of the world’s problems are to be blamed on the Left.

    It is very apparent you’re more than happy to excuse away murdering dictators like Pinochet, if it suits you, so might I suggest you read my comments policy.

    I am not interested in your profoundly ignorant comments and shaky grasp of reality.

    Please, if you wish to push such chronically ill informed views, do so on your own blog?

    My patience with you has run out.

    Be gone.


    31/01/2011 at 01:12

  5. Really Mod. Next thing we will be told is Franco, Salazar, the Greek Colonels, the Salvador death squads, General Efraín Ríos Montt of Guatemala, General Alfedo Stroessner, Somoza, The Shah in Iran, Syngman Rhee, Park Chung Hee and the Korean generals, Suharto, etc- are the fault of the Left as well.

    Andrew Murphy

    31/01/2011 at 06:38

  6. Indeed Andrew, I suspect we’ll soon be told “they were less than ideal”?

    It is all nonsense and detracts from the theme of the thread.

    I don’t expect much, but I like to hope that most of my readers have a bit of political savvy, have read a book or two, and are capable of engaging in a degree of argumentation, and not the type of stupidity I have just dealt with.


    31/01/2011 at 07:10

  7. Mods

    I did look at the comments again. As stated before the world of the 1970’s was much different than the one we live in today. The Cold War was a series of battles across the planet.

    The product of the Cold War was a series of corrupt dictators. Those on the left like Castro and the nut in North Korea are far more corrupt than the folks mentioned by Murphy. I have stated that they should ALL be tried and Castro goes first.

    However, that being said rightist dictators left their country in far better shape than those on the left. They were more concerned with gathering wealth than economic malfeasance. Today Chile and the countries named by Murphy are in far better shape than Cuba, North Korea or Zimbabwe.

    Actually Mods I have likely read more books than you. The difference is that I deal with the historical world of the Cold War. In essence all of the above are products of that Era.

    Are you now claiming that the Truthers named are not hard left. You can correctly state that the views expressed in Counterpunch are not yours.

    How many of my original list describe Mark Elf? He is clearly not on the right.

    He is not a Holocaust Denier and to the best of my knowledge has never been a truther.


    31/01/2011 at 11:00

  8. Beakerkin,

    Can’t you take a hint?

    Please don’t try to lecture people about the Seventies, I was there I remember it well, and the 1960s, and before…

    You read books ? Fascinating, presumably Bill O’Reilly, Rush limbaugh and other Right-winger nutjobs must high on your reading list?

    Obviously basic history isn’t, because it was then you’d know more about Chile.

    You would know that Pinochet committed the murder of civilians, not in a civil war, but picked them up, tortured them and finally had them killed.

    Pinochet use the full force of the State to murder unarmed teachers, lawyers, housewives, students, etc

    Before they were murdered they were often interrogated and tortured

    But in your book he’s just “less than ideal”.

    Now feck off you ignoramus.


    31/01/2011 at 11:18

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